Microsporidia: A Review of 150 Years of Research

Microsporidia: A Review of 150 Years of Research

C. Franzen , * Open Modal
Authors Info & Affiliations
The Open Parasitology Journal 17 Jan 2008 RESEARCH ARTICLE DOI: 10.2174/1874421400802010001


Microsporidiology is a field of science with a rather long history beginning in the middle of the 19th century when a microsporidian infection of the silkworm devastated the European silkworm industry. Several other microsporidia, mainly in insects and fish, were later described, but these organisms seemed to be mere curiosities for several years. However, when it became clear that microsporidia were causing economically important diseases in insects and fish and more recently, in mammals and even in humans with immunodeficiency, microsporidia have become a favourite subject for biologists studying intracellular parasitism and molecular phylogeny. This review summarizes 150 years of microsporidian research and traces the role of the microsporidia and of microsporidiology in biology and medicine.